Ten years— a decade!— ago, I met Phineas for the first time. He was small, and withdrawn, and clearly different than every other 14 month-old baby I’d ever held in my arms.
“One more sleep!”
This year, understanding took root. Phineas’ birthday is December 1, and he has been anticipating it with the kind of passion that only a person with no real concept of time can muster.
“When I wake up, it will be my birthday!”
We talk a lot about legacy at my house. Not so much the financial concept of legacy, but the handing down of a strong Christian belief to the next generation.
It’s only Wednesday, but already it’s been a tough week for Phineas. Come to think of it, last week wasn’t so great either.
It feels like everywhere he turns lately, he’s pushing the limits, and not necessarily in a Chuck Yeager “I’m gonna break the sound barrier” kind of way. He’s been obstinate, disobedient, just down right naughty. Continue reading
One of the unexpected blessings of family photo accounts is that you never quite know what you might get when you open your app. Over the years, I’ve been met with myriad shots of interesting insects, countless selfies, and more than a few videos of kids riding, scooting, crawling, jumping, dancing, or otherwise doing something deemed noteworthy by some random family member. It’s fun, usually, to see snippets of daily life I missed right here under my roof through the eyes of my husband or kids.
I recently took a trip to visit my parents. Took most of the children with me so that my wife could finish a book project she’s been writing.
This isn’t the first time I’ve slipped away with the children but every time is different as they each get older.
I met Babita when she was 12, two years after we first placed her picture on our refrigerator.
It was the summer of 2009, and finally, yes, finally, after years of prayer, I was in Nepal, a country that God had placed in my heart before I ever knew a thing about it.
There she was, at a children’s home in Kathmandu, where she had come to stay a few years earlier. It was an awkward meeting in front of the other children, me handing her a teddy bear just like all the others that each of our children, who at that point numbered five, had tucked in their beds at home.
It should have been a yes. It should have been a yes, and right now, I should be finding a way to finance a celebratory dinner at Pizza Hut (her request) for eleven elated family members about to embark together on a new and thrilling adventure.
I’ve spent a lot of time lately pondering the innate upside down truths of the Gospel. Dying to live. Loving enemies. The meek inheriting the earth. All of it is foolishness … and yet, I have seen it, lived it, been blessed by it. My story is full of moments where what should not be was, and what man called impossible came to pass.
I bet yours is, too.
Eight years ago this week, we were settling in to the new normal of life with Phineas. In the six years since Jack had been born, we had inched slowly towards the kind of independence that only a family who has left behind the season of little ones understands. There were no sippy cups to tote, no nap times to schedule around, no need to keep the Legos off the floor or the kitchen cabinets secured. Suddenly we were back to navigating all of that and more: the 24/7 work of peeling back the layers of quiet contemplation that masked Phin’s personality and revealed to us just who he was, and why.